Small Business Productivity Mistakes to Avoid

Productivity is paramount to success at small businesses. More often than not, our Global Resources Reviews experts find glaring productivity mistakes in many companies they visit. Mistakes are sometimes inevitable, but they should be avoided whenever possible. Here are several productivity killers that plague many small businesses that yours should definitely avoid:

Lack of Group Hierarchy – All group projects must have a leader. Otherwise, the group will not perform in a timely and productive manner. Lack of a leader that dictates hierarchy often results in time wasting moments like those “5 minute” meetings that last an hour. A team leader must be designated to get the members to do things on time and to keep everyone in the loop.

Frequent Coffee Breaks – Don’t allow your employees to have multiple coffee, tea or smoke breaks. This often leads to time wasting. Let your employees have a regular lunch break instead. Minimize the time employees spend away from their desks as much as possible so they meet deadlines.

Not Prioritizing Email Responses – This is a very common mistake that sometimes sets projects back. Teach your employees to promptly respond to emails where more than one other person is waiting on a reply. If two or three people are waiting for a response to get going with a project, it should be provided at once. Tell employees to prioritize such emails over all the other things that fill up an inbox.

Noisy Coworkers – According to a recent survey conducted by CareerBuilder, noisy coworkers are one of the top ten productivity killers at work. Noise can especially be a problem at open space offices. A single noisy employee can distract or disturb several others. Therefore, maintain a quiet or low noise policy at the office during all working hours. If there are employees who need to talk on the phone a lot, have them seated away from the others to reduce overall noise level.

Overwork – Small businesses are more prone to have overworked employees. It’s quite common to see one person handling the work of two or three at small companies that have recently started. Overworked employees can never truly be productive. Therefore, make sure you fill vacancies immediately at your workplace. Hire freelancers to handle menial tasks. Occasionally monitor the tasks employees undertake to ensure that no one is working too much or too little.

If your small business needs to improve productivity or any other aspect that increases sales, contact us at GR-US.com for a thorough evaluation.

Small Businesses and Trade Libel

Trade libel is a legal term that refers to slander, libel or disparagement of one business (including its products or services) by another business in written or oral publication. All small businesses must be acutely aware of this term and how to avoid it. Considering that businesses are engaged more than ever on the web and on social media, companies are vulnerable to trade libel lawsuits more than ever before as well.

Doing business can be competitive. When multiple businesses compete for a similar customer base, comparisons are natural. There’s a fine line between legitimate product comparison, and outright libel. For example, if your business produces an advertisement claiming that a competitor’s product is of bad quality, then your business will be at risk for a trade libel lawsuit. It’s never okay for a business to make untrue or dubious claims about another’s business or its products.

Some of this is largely common sense. But a surprising number of businesses are getting sued over trade libel and defamation. So here are several best practices that will help your company avoid an expensive lawsuit:

Develop an in-house policy: You must have an in-house policy that protects your company against trade libel. It should explicitly state what’s acceptable and what’s not acceptable when making marketing claims of any kind. Everyone who works at your company, including interns and contractors, should understand this policy and follow it. You should develop this policy with legal experts. Global Resources LLC can help your small business develop a sound trade libel policy at an affordable rate.

Review social media posts: Those little tweets and the Facebook posts are what get most companies into trouble. Do not allow employees or marketing personnel to say whatever they want on social media. These posts should be reviewed by one or two people. It’s paramount that social media posts that mention people or businesses by name are thoroughly monitored before publication.

Train employees: Employees must be at least minimally trained to avoid trade libel in all written or oral publications put out by the company. You can hire a lawyer or a business consultant to provide lectures so your employees know what’s acceptable and what’s not.

In addition, Global Resources Reviews for small businesses are designed to point out weaknesses in policy or practice that lead to situations like trade libel lawsuits. Conducting an annual review therefore will put your company at less risk.

Can Small Retail Businesses Grow Even When Retail Giants are Collapsing?

Retail giants are in trouble. Earlier this year, The Limited gave a grim announcement that it is closing all its retail stores in the U.S. The ubiquitous Macy’s is poised to close 68 stores this year. Kohl’s reported that the company stock is decreasing. All in all, this is a bleak time for retail giants in America. Many small retail businesses fear that their fate might actually be worse. If an internationally recognized brand like Macy’s is having trouble keeping stores open, what hope does a small, local retail business have? Especially given the fact that small businesses overall are facing hard times? Actually, the situation may not be bad as some small business owners initially thought.

One of the biggest reasons the big name brand retail outlets are closing is because these companies have little local identity. Consumers tend to skip them over in favor of either online shopping or for niche businesses with strong local roots. Big retailers are also facing crushing inventory expenses because of the sheer size of inventory. Most small businesses don’t have inventories big enough to face the same expenses.

What was once seen as advantageous when it came to giant retail—such as uniformity, national brand, massive size—is now working against these companies. For small businesses, this is good news. If big retail is leaving town, that means there will be more customers seeking alternative buying options. More importantly, the strength of small retail businesses lies in a strong local identity. A small business of any kind can thrive by developing strong bonds with the local community. After all, no other company will get to know the needs of the local consumer base better than a local small business.

Our experts who provide Global Resources Reviews routinely advise clients to market locally to develop a loyal customer base. Marketing locally is also cheap. Once a sense of loyalty or keenness with a brand has been developed, that customer will become a lifelong buyer.

It isn’t difficult for small retailers to invest in local audiences. Cheap advertising on local social media channels can be enormously lucrative. Twitter and Facebook are excellent channels to reach out to local buyers. Posters at the town post office or a gathering point can help too. There are plenty of other innovative yet affordable ways to attract local customers to keep a small business open.

Global Resources LLC can provide small retail businesses with specific advice on how to succeed in a seemingly failing market.

Making Sales in the New Year

Global Resources helps put small and medium – size businesses on the path to success.  As we begin the New Year, we look at the significance of sales in the small business marketplace.  Below are four sales trends that will greatly affect the revenue of small businesses around the country:

  1. Sales and marketing have a closer relationship – The familiar disconnect between sales and marketing is sure to lessen as people start seeing the benefits gained from working cohesively. Whether it’s called sales enablement or just doing good business, these two departments will interact and engage more, which will lead to an increase in revenue.
  2. Cold calling will be affected by the impact of social media marketing – With a variety of new solutions and selling strategies available, cold calling is likely to diminish in its significance as an exclusive sales strategy for companies in the future. Consumers will be more likely persuaded when cold calls are done within a marketing strategy that includes social media touch points that helps turn a cold call into a warm call.
  3. Social selling is king – The new type of social selling is extremely important for salespeople to learn more about the people they are selling to. With this model, you can target companies and even know more about the pain points these individuals and their companies are experiencing.
  4. Discounts and loyalty programs will continue securing more sales – It was reported that an annual survey of 500 small to medium-size businesses found that 26 percent of their sales come from discounts. The average consumer is far likelier to purchase goods or services if they are offered an incentive or discount, especially from a business they are familiar with and have patronized in the past.

To learn more about us and / or to schedule your complimentary appointment with the business consultants at Global Resources LLC, call us at 855-338-0266.

Understanding Advertising & Marketing Laws in Business

Global Resources is a full-service business development group and general management consulting firm focused on small and medium-size privately-held companies in North America. We understand that marketing and advertising your products or services effectively is key to the success of your business. However, all businesses have a legal responsibility to ensure that any advertising claims are truthful, not deceptive and that your marketing activities don’t break the law.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) oversees and regulates advertising and marketing law in the United States. These laws can potentially impact many areas of your business, including how you label your products, how you conduct email and telemarketing campaigns, any health and environmental claims you may make, as well as how you advertise to children.

Below you will find links to useful FTC resources and guides that can help you understand these laws and how they apply to your business.

  • Truth in Advertising and Marketing Claims – Learn how you can ensure your promotion activities are truthful and not deceptive.  Areas covered include using endorsements in your marketing, advertising to children, “Made in the USA” labels and health and environmental claims.
  • Industry Guides – The FTC has some rules and compliance guides for specific industries including franchises, real estate, clothing manufacturers, and others. Learn information on laws that could affect your industry or business type.
  • Telemarketing – Learn how the National Do Not Call Registry and other laws impact your telemarketing efforts and how to comply.
  • Email SPAM – Planning an email campaign? The law is very specific on what email you can send and to whom.  Be sure to understand email SPAM before you send out an email campaign.

To learn more about us and / or to schedule your complimentary appointment with the business consultants at Global Resources LLC, call us at 855-338-0266.

How to Achieve Success in the Workplace

The consultants at Global Resources help all levels of business professionals achieve success. This year, make your New Year’s resolution to boost your efficiency, productivity and fun for a milestone year unlike any other. Here are tips to get you off and running:

  1. Prioritize. Create 3 different task lists: month, week and day. On each list identify 2 to 3 of the most important assignments or projects so you can focus and plan ahead with a clear vision on how you will accomplish each one. 2 to 3 objectives on each list will leave you room in your day for emergency projects.
  2. Ditch distractions. Internet, email, phone calls and even unnecessary meetings not just can, but will result in heaps of unproductivity. Bolster your willpower and limit yourself!
  3. Just say no! Stop being so polite. When you’ve reached your boiling point learn how to politely say “No” to additional work.
  4. Streamline. Did you know having a to-do list on your phone, table computer, work computer and your paper planner commonly has the opposite effect of staying organized? It actually increases your chance of forgetting tasks. Just pick one method and stick with it.
  5. Delegate. There’s no “I” in team. Learn to hand out some tasks so you can free up some time to do what you need to.
  6. Look ahead. Stop putting out fires for a minute and take some time to strategize a few moves down the road. Then stick it on your monthly task list so you don’t forget it. It’s good to do this about once a week so you can visualize and plan for any changes to your task list.

To learn more about us and / or to schedule your complimentary appointment with the business experts at Global Resources LLC, call us at 855-338-0266.

Unconventional Places to Find New Employees

The professionals at Global Resources utilize expertise and knowledge to access the information necessary for small business growth.   We often help the owners of small and medium – size businesses redefine key staffing roles, select fitting candidates and train new employees. Lately, we’ve seen many business owners questioning various recruiting methods. However, in today’s market, many successful business leaders are looking at unconventional places to find new employees:

  1. Panels/lectures – Industry panels and lectures are held regularly, especially in larger metropolitan areas. Participating in or hosting a panel is a great way to not only position your company as an expert in your field, but also find potential job candidates. Members of multiple industries can get together in this space to discuss ideas and collaborate, which could lead to the employment of someone who might not have been aware that your company is hiring.
  2. Virtual career fairs – Online job fairs are becoming a popular alternative to physical career fairs. These virtual events provide all the benefits of showcasing your company at a career fair, but without the travel commitment and large expense. Companies can also find out-of-area candidates who wouldn’t be able to attend an in-person event, allowing them to reach new faces that they would otherwise miss.
  3. Hosted networking events – Industry networking events are good for more than just finding potential business partners and mentors. Hosting an informal “networking night” will draw individuals who are interested in your company. Candidates will appreciate the ability to speak with potential bosses and coworkers in a casual, relaxed atmosphere, and learn more about the company from people they’d actually be working with. 

To learn more about us and / or to schedule your complimentary appointment with the business consultants at Global Resources LLC, call us at 855-338-0266.

Tech Predictions That May Affect Small Business

The consultants at Global Resources help business professionals access the information necessary to reach success.  As business pros look ahead into the new year, many are looking at popular predictions expected to affect lifestyle and business:

  • AOL Will Get Cool Again – Surprising to many, the “You’ve Got Mail” progenitor is getting its groove back. With the help of a series of ad-tech acquisitions—like Millennial Media, Vidible and Convertro—the Verizon ( vz  )  unit is building out a powerful new advertising platform, called ONE by AOL. Although it may not make it into another romantic comedy, AOL is actually looking downright hip to tech-savvy marketers.
  • The iPhone Will Get a Radical Upgrade – The rumor mill is already cranking with leaks about the iPhone 8, due in 2017. Marking the 10th anniversary of Steve Jobs’ original iPhone, the new model is expected to include radical changes like a super-high-resolution OLED screen that stretches from edge to edge of the device and a home button transformed into a virtual on-screen button. Other rumored features include wireless charging capability. After the mildly disappointing iPhone 7 that launched recently, the next update should be a more radical hit.
  • Uber and Airbnb Will Conquer the Sunbelt – The new economy’s ride-sharing and home-sharing giants are most popular today in dense coastal cities, such as New York, Boston and San Francisco. But new research suggests Uber and Airbnb will make more inroads in the Southwest next year: It found significant spikes in news and social media mentions of the phrase “sharing economy” in cities including Phoenix, Denver, Las Vegas and Dallas.

To learn more about us and / or to schedule your complimentary appointment with the business experts at Global Resources LLC, call us at 855-338-0266.

3 Business Tips for Entrepreneurs

Global Resources LLC has the expertise to help entrepreneurs launch small businesses. Starting a business is a huge commitment that can reap many long-term rewards. If you’re looking to become a business owner, we can help put you on the path to success.

If a new business is on your horizon, here are three general tips that can help you reach your goals:

  1. Save as much money as possible before launching – All too often, people go into business without any savings, exclusively using loan money from friends, banks or the SBA. They expect to be able to start paying the loans back right away with their profits. What these business owners don’t realize is that it can take months or years to make a profit. And once a lender discovers a business isn’t as profitable as expected, the lender is likely to call in the loan or refuse to renew it for another year, if the terms of the loan agreement allow for such action. Often new business owners then have to take out home equity loans or use credit cards to pay off their loans (which puts their home and credit rating at risk).
  2. Protect your personal assets – When you go into business for yourself, you are usually personally liable for all judgments and debts that the business incurs. This includes business loans, taxes, money owed to suppliers and landlords and any judgments against the business as a result of a lawsuit. If you don’t protect yourself, a creditor can go after your personal assets, such as your car and your house, to pay for these debts.  The type of legal entity you chose for the structure of the business should be evaluated for its effect on the personal liability of the owner.
  3. Understand how — and if — you will make a profit- You should be able to summarize how your business plans to make a substantial profit. For starters, you need to know your costs: how much you’ll spend purchasing inventory, paying the rent, compensating any employees and covering what is likely to be a surprisingly long list of other costs. Then you can figure out exactly how much you need to sell each month, for how many dollars, to cover those expenses and have an adequate profit besides.

To learn more about us and / or to schedule your complimentary appointment with the business experts at Global Resources, call us at 855-338-0266.

Tips to Maximize Your Holiday Networking Events

Tis the season for networking events filling your social calendar.  So, the business consultants at Global Resources have tips to help you maximize your networking experiences. 

  1. Remember that networking is about being genuine and authentic, building trust and relationships, and seeing how you can help others.
  2. Ask yourself what your goals are in participating in networking meetings so that you will pick groups that will help you get what you are looking for. Some meetings are based more on learning, making contacts, and/or volunteering rather than on strictly making business connections.
  3. Visit as many groups as possible that spark your interest. Notice the tone and attitude of the group. Do the people sound supportive of one another? Does the leadership appear competent? Many groups will allow you to visit two times before joining.
  4. Hold volunteer positions in organizations. This is a great way to stay visible and give back to groups that have helped you.
  5. Ask open-ended questions in networking conversations. This means questions that ask who, what, where, when, and how as opposed to those that can be answered with a simple yes or no. This form of questioning opens up the discussion and shows listeners that you are interested in them.
  6. Be able to articulate what you are looking for and how others may help you. Too often people in conversations ask, “How may I help you?” and no immediate answer comes to mind.
  7. Follow through quickly and efficiently on referrals you are given. When people give you referrals, your actions are a reflection on them. Respect and honor that and your referrals will grow.
  8. Call those you meet who may benefit from what you do and vice versa. Express that you enjoyed meeting them, and ask if you could get together and share ideas.

To learn more about us and / or to schedule your complimentary appointment with the business consultants at Global Resources LLC, call us at 855-338-0266.